Syria elects municipal councilors

DAMASCUS, Syria, Aug. 26 (UPI) -- Syrians went to the polls Sunday to elect nearly 10,000 municipal councilors across the country.

French leader has message for Syria

PARIS, Aug. 22 (UPI) -- French Foreign Minister Bernard Kouchner reportedly tried to send a message to Syrian President Bashar Al-Assad urging peace with Lebanaon.

Syrian president sworn in for second term

DAMASCUS, Syria, July 17 (UPI) -- Syrian President Bashar al-Assad officially began his second seven-year term Tuesday.

Olmert calls for Syria peace talks

JERUSALEM, July 10 (UPI) -- Israeli Prime Minister Ehud Olmert is calling for the resumption of peace talks with Syrian President Bashar al-Assad. Olmert told the Arab TV network Al Arabiya that he wants to resume peace talks that stalled between the two nations seven years ago, the

Syrian officials banned from United States

KENNEBUNKPORT, Maine, June 30 (UPI) -- President George Bush has banned Syrian and Lebanese officials accused of undermining the Lebanese government from entering the United States.

Rice meets with Syrian counterpart

SHARM EL SHEIK, Egypt, May 3 (UPI) -- U.S. Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice met Thursday with Syrian Foreign Minister Walid al-Moallem in Egypt in the first such contact in two years.

Syrian parliamentary elections begin

DAMASCUS, Syria, April 22 (UPI) -- Polls opened Sunday in Syria for two days of parliamentary elections to fill 167 National Progressive Front seats and 83 independent seats.

Cheney accuses Pelosi of 'bad behavior'

WASHINGTON, April 5 (UPI) -- Vice President Dick Cheney Thursday accused House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, D-Calif., of "bad behavior" for visiting Syrian President Bashar al-Assad.

Carter defends Pelosi's Syria trip

WASHINGTON, April 5 (UPI) -- Former President Jimmy Carter says he supports House Speaker Nancy Pelosi's trip to Syria, despite criticism of the visit by the Bush administration.

Pelosi meets with Syrian president

DAMASCUS, Syria, April 4 (UPI) -- U.S. House Speaker Nancy Pelosi met with Syrian President Bashar al-Assad in Damascus Wednesday despite objections from the Bush administration.

U.S. House Speaker Pelosi in Syria

DAMASCUS, Syria, April 3 (UPI) -- House Speaker Nancy Pelosi arrived in Damascus Tuesday, the highest-ranking U.S. politician to visit Syria since 2003.

Pelosi criticized for Syria visit

WASHINGTON, March 31 (UPI) -- U.S. House Speaker Nancy Pelosi has drawn fire from the Bush administration for her planned visit to Syria.

Musharraf seeks to help Palestinians

ISLAMABAD, Pakistan, Jan. 20 (UPI) -- Pakistani President Pervez Musharraf Saturday began a four-day Mideast tour aimed at devising a strategy to bring Palestinians together.

Iraq president to talk with Iran leaders

BAGHDAD, Nov. 21 (UPI) -- After warming relations with Syria, Iraqi President Jalal Talabani announced he will travel to Tehran to meet Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad.

Assad: Syria and Israel can achieve peace

DAMASCUS, Syria, Oct. 9 (UPI) -- Syrian President Bashar al-Assad said in an interview with the BBC that the United States cannot function as "an impartial arbiter" in talks with Israel.
Page 14 of 17
Bashar al-Assad
Syrian President Bashar al-Assad waves to supporters in the street after addressing parliament on March 30, 2011 in Damascus, Syria. Al-Assad ordered a committee to conduct an investigation into the deaths of protesters and also to study the lifting of emergency laws. UPI

Bashar al-Assad (Arabic: بشار حافظ الأسد‎, Baššār al-ʾAsad; born 11 September 1965) is the President of Syria and Regional Secretary of the Ba'ath Party. His father Hafez al-Assad ruled Syria for 29 years until his death. Al-Assad was elected in 2000 and 2007, but was unopposed each time.

Bashar al-Assad was born in Damascus on 11 September 1965, the son of Aniseh (née Makhluf) and Hafez al-Assad. Initially Bashar had few political aspirations. His father had been grooming Bashar's older brother, Basil al-Assad, as a future president. Bashar studied ophthalmology at Damascus University 1988 and arrived in London in 1992 to continue his studies. He was recalled in 1994 to join the Syrian army after Basil's death in an automobile accident. Bashar entered the military academy at Homs, north of Damascus, following the death of Basil, and was propelled through the ranks to become a colonel in January 1999. The accident made Bashar his father's new heir-apparent.

When the elder Assad died in 2000, Bashar was appointed leader of the Baath-Party and the Army and was elected president unopposed with what the regime claimed to be a massive popular support (97.2% of the votes), after the Majlis Al Sha'ab (Parliament) swiftly voted to lower the minimum age for candidates from 40 to 34 (Assad's age when he was elected). On 27 May 2007 Bashar was approved as president for another seven-year term, with the official result of 97.6% of the votes in a referendum without another candidate.

This article is licensed under the GNU Free Documentation License.
It uses material from the Wikipedia article "Bashar al-Assad."
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